When you flash your grin after hearing a joke or some good news, is your smile confident and happy? Alternatively, does your joy feel tampered due to a feeling of shame when you open your mouth due to tooth loss? Tooth loss is extremely common, with nearly 78 percent of all American adults missing at least one tooth from their mouth. When you are missing a tooth, not only can your self-esteem suffer, so can your quality of life.
Tooth loss not only negatively impacts your appearance, but it can also lead to pain when you chew. You may also be at risk for more tooth loss, as your remaining teeth can start to drift into the spot left behind, causing them to loosen. We here at T-Town Smiles meet many patients who are missing teeth and are completely unaware of dental implants and how this procedure can restore their smile.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a special type of restoration that can give you a permanent and attractive replacement for your missing teeth. While other types of restorations may last a long time, none of them boast the success rate of dental implants, which have an incredible 98 percent success rate in patients who take good care of the restoration. They can improve your bite force, restoring it to full efficiency. It can also prevent your face from taking on an early sagged, aged appearance. Dental implants can also prevent your gums from shrinking and by stimulating the bone in the region, it can also prevent bone loss.
The Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are a surgical procedure, but please know that it is both a safe and routine outpatient procedure. Getting a dental implant starts with the placing of a surgical incision directly into your gums, allowing access to the jawbone. A titanium screw is then placed directly into the jawbone, then suture the surgical site shut to allow it to heal. Titanium is used, not only because it is strong and durable, but because your body does not reject it like it would other metals. Instead, your jawbone will build up over the screw, a process known as osseointegration. This is vital to help ensure the implant is sturdy and long lasting.
Then we wait for the surgical site to heal, which can take several months. After it fully heals, the next part of the implant is applied to the titanium screw. This is the abutment or the connecting piece. It works by allowing the dentist to attach the dental restoration, the crown, to the implant itself. The restoration is the part of the implant that resembles a tooth. While the initial procedure itself only takes between an hour to an hour and a half, getting an implant does require some waiting and from initial surgery to the placement of the restoration, may take between six months to a year.
Are You A Good Candidate For Dental Implants?
Good candidates for dental implants are patients who have adequate bone mass, non-smokers, and people who are in good oral health. If you do not have enough bone material, you may be a good candidate for a bone graft, which will help allow you to get the implant procedure. Smokers will need to stop smoking, and people who are not in good oral health may need to be treated for gum disease or infection before we proceed.
If you are interested in learning more about dental implants, or you would like to set up an appointment with us for a consultation to determine if you are a good candidate for them, please give us a call here at T-Town Smiles at 918-488-9770 today!
Accepting New Patients
Looking for a full-service dentist in Tulsa?
At the office of Dr. Scott Street, we offer stress-free family care using modern technology and an old-fashioned personal approach. We provide a full selection of dental treatments, from routine cleanings to top-quality dental restorations. If you are looking for a full-service family dentist in Tulsa, OK, call us today at 918-488-9770 or use our online Appointment Request form.
Suite 1107 (11th Floor)
Tulsa, OK 74136
Tuesday 8am - 5pm
Wednesday 8am - 5pm
Thursday 8am - 5pm
Friday 8am - 5pm
Additional times are available.
Dr. Scott Street and the team at T-Town Smiles are proud to be the local Tulsa Dentist serving families in Tulsa, Broken Arrow, Jenks, Oakhurst, Bixby, Glenpool and surrounding Tulsa communities.